The Peer Pressure Run

“A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself” Jim Morrison

Even to the point of being a whinge bag about running – and randomly ramble about cycling. I have the best mates.

I know we aim to teach children not to bow to peer pressure. In some respects, I suspect the behaviour of my mates wasn’t really so much peer pressure but active encouragement by reminding me what races I have planned and that I really should be running. Three separate friends today, when I mentioned tonights club run, told me I should go as I debated staying home.

I bowed to pressure and went to run.

They were right, I do need to run more. Most of my races this year (that are booked) are actually running races. This is to keep me running as without it, I would likely sack it off but as it is, I have a half iron to do and so run I must.

I shall be the first to admit that my routing isn’t settled yet, or not as much as I would like, and my running mojo since the illness, is not yet back to the levels they were at before Christmas. Mojo lost. In general for training.

My mate, who was running the session, told me me I looked miserable all the way round – and to be fair, I probably was – but I suppose it was nice to actually be out, running, on a treadmill. I have lost my mojo with training in general recently – after having 3 weeks off, it’s the process of getting back to where it was feels like hard work.

On a more positive note, I’m planning on getting. a week pass for the leisure centre when I go on holiday (one of my favourite pools – with twilight swims!) and I’ve bought some new books to take with me.










Starting again

I am starting again and this time I’m not talking about relationships and starting again after becoming single. On that front as I’ve already said, I am in a far better place than I ever thought I would be. I am enjoying being single. Today is a prime example of why. A friend on Tuesday night, post swim, asked me if I fancied going climbing. I’ve not been since I was dating the lad that first introduced me to it – naturally I said yes. Bit of a habit! Anyway, this isn’t so much about that but more about my first week easing myself back into training.

After three weeks of enforced rest/being ill/recovering, I started some training this week. I feel like I have lost a bit of my mojo with being ill, and because I know I am still not quite 100% and I have lost a bit of fitness I feel like I have a bit of a fight on my hands. My swim endurance (pace is fine so long as I’m well fuels and rested) has dropped a bit, my run left me with DOMS and I looked at my bike last night and just didn’t have the energy.

I also think I am being too harsh on myself. I am pretty sure it will all come back sooner than I think but I know I am a little impatient with myself. It’s also frustrating because before Christmas my fitness and endurance was on a general upward trajectory and I could see the improvements in my training. Ah well. Like friends have said, better now than in the middle of race season.

Things will slowly come back – I have also decided that I don’t think I am eating enough and that what I am eating probably isn’t really good enough quality – too much sugar/rubbish – so I have a few things I want to have a go at in the next few weeks – salads, more veggies, and possibly offering to cook more at home – we’ll see (I do need to improve my diet!). This has been backed up by some stats – at my gym there is a ‘Bodytrax’ machine that measures a load of different stats – I have lost weight – nearly back to what I was a month after the break up – however, my body fat percentage has gone up since Christmas and my muscle mass gone down. This is hardly surprising considering I have been so inactive but still – one kilogram difference either way.

On the plus side to recovery and what not – I did finally go bouldering again and I am debating in learning how to climb, with ropes with the intention of being able to relay and go with mates – making the most of Rock City. We shall but see. Today reminded my though that bouldering and climbing wrecks your hands. They are a little tender tonight, but I definitely feel better for doing something different, with a mate, and having a laugh!

Onwards and upwards!

Back on the Road to Recovery

So far January has been a bit rubbish for me. I’ve not done any training whatsoever due to an extreme bout of tonsillitis, having never had it before, I can honestly say I never want it again. It has been awful! So awful that I couldn’t get excited about new tyres coming for the bike.

Anyway, light at the end of the tunnel, a full week off work and hours spent watching GCN on YouTube, I am starting to feel better. So much better that this morning I decided to actually try doing something useful with my bike.

My winter bike hasn’t been touched since my last ride out months ago – on said ride I got a puncture and I was in such a foul mood that rather than fix it on the side of the road, I decided that ringing home and getting a lift back was a better idea. My bike, and it’s puncture, have been sat in the garage ever since. Over Christmas though I decided to treat my bike to a new set of tyres – hopefully something a bit more puncture resistant and better quality. The front wheel was still on it’s factory fitted and there was a £12 cheap tyre on the rear.

New tyres! Continental GP4000 sII

I ordered some Continental GP4000 sII from Wiggle – £60 for a pair. I did try getting them at Evans Cycles and Halfords – I didn’t try my LBS like I should have because in all honesty, I didn’t think they would be able to price check them. When you’re saving for new wheels and you’re a bit skint, it does matter, however torn I was.

The tyres arrived right as I was in the middle of being poorly with no motivation or energy to fit them. This morning though, well on the road to recovery, I thought I’d better give it a go. Cant be that hard…. Now, most of my cycling life, I have been with a bloke who cycles, and I’ve left most of the maintenance stuff to him, so this was new territory.

Turns out wasn’t half as bad as I was expecting. I knew what I needed to do but double checked anyway. Had the new inner for back wheel ready, track pump and tyre leavers to hand and set about changing the wheels. Turns out I’m more capable than I thought at sorting random stuff out and it didn’t take me as long as I thought it would either. So I am feeling quite smug this afternoon about it. Wheels are now back on the bike – correctly – I usually stress about putting the back wheel on – but no issues. Took the bike down the road to check all in order – bosh – job done (can already tell a difference in tyres too – wish id changed them sooner!). Although more randomly, after riding the Ridley inside on the turbo and getting back on the spesh – the spesh felt huge! It was also REALLY cold outside (although to be fair, I went out with bare minimum on just to check it).

Now all I need to to properly get better and start building the training up again!

Cough cough splutter

I am rubbish at being ill.

I suspect most people are but when you have races coming up and your training, pre illness, was going well, it is infuriating having to rest – creating a slightly grumpy triathlete! I started with a cough about two or three weeks ago. It got really bad this week and in the last week I have barely done any training – enforced rest. I can’t say that I have taken it too well. It has been glorious today and all I have wanted to do is go ride my bike.

So I am nearly on two weeks off.

My cough has improved and I now have symptoms more akin to having a cold. I am debating slowly easing back into training in a hope that I have cracked the back of it now – so my plan of action is some yoga at the start of the week and into an easy run/swim on Tuesday and see how it goes.

I am also going to re-jig my training plan. I am only 7 weeks off my first race (a 10k) and less than three months of a half marathon.

In the meantime – I have been swotting up, watching lots of GCN videos on YouTube and booked another race/ordered some new tyres…. It has kept my motivation in place and helped prevent me from going loopy!

There are some advantages to enforced rest I suppose. Fingers crossed that this week I can get back into training and get some structure and routine back this week! I know I haven’t been alone.

Why hello 2019!

So I receive a tweet suggesting I change my Twitter name/handle – I think I probably should. I cant believe how far I’ve actually come in the last six or seven months. Anyway, this quick post isn’t about that – but it did make me think about what I should change it to – food for thought and suggestions welcome!

It’s not even about the fact I spend New Year’s Eve tinkering with TT bars on my bike and watching GCN videos on YouTube.

No – it’s about the fact that I spent the first day of the year on my CX bike, with a mate, plodding (read: getting whooped) around the Blue Route at Sherwood Pines. Poor lad had to deal with me coughing my guts up most of the day. I went last Friday and was fine, despite cough, today, on lack of sleep and coughing – it was hard going. I suppose the fact that my mate is far far stronger and skilled than I am put me through my paces didn’t help matters but the sun came out, I ate cake and had a lot of fun. Should 2019 continue in such a manner then bring it on!